Spitfire PM631 Mk XIX Photo Reconnaissance | BBMF

  • STATUS: Airworthy
  • LOCATION: RAF Coningsby
  • ROLE: Fighter
  • BUILT: 1945
  • LENGTH:  9.95 m/32 ft 8 in
  • WINGSPAN: 11.23 m/36 ft 10 in
  • ENGINE: Rolls-Royce Griffon 66
  • MAXIMUM SPEED:  445 mph (716 km/h)
  • RANGE: 1,400 miles (2,250 km)
  • ARMAMENT: None. Two vertical cameras and/or one oblique camera in a heated compartment aft of the cockpit

Built in November 1945 by Vickers-Armstrong at Reading, UK as a high altitude photo reconnaissance aircraft with a Griffon 66 engine and pressurised cockpit, Spitfire PM631 was delivered to the RAF in 1946 so she was too late to see any operational service.  Instead she served with 203 Advanced Flying School between May 1949 and January 1950 before entering storage. On the 2nd July 1951 she was delivered to Short Brothers at Hooten Park before being assigned to the Meteorological Research Flight and moved to Woodvale on the 13th July 1951. She remained there until June 1957 undertaking temperature and humidity flights.

On June 14, 1957 she joined the Battle Of Britain Memorial Flight as one of the initial aircraft. With a short loan spell

to Central Fighter Establishment in 1964 for use against BAe Lightnings and a part in the Battle of Britain movie in 1968, Spitfire PM631 is the BBMF’s longest serving aircraft and is presented as a PR XIX of No 541 Squadron which performed photographic reconnaissance missions over the Europe from early 1944 to the end of the war.

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